It took me all this time to realise that it is impossible to prepare properly without a real good camp and authoritative coach. That was the main fault in my career, I was too lazy to go away to a respected team. Now, I have Hyppolite destroying me on the pads and then I spar six minute rounds with three fresh opponents…The problem before was that I was sparring with friends who were doing me a favour by being there and so I could not go so hard on them, looking for the knockout. In Amsterdam, it was a struggle of life or death. I was looking for the knockout and so was my opponent. In future I will spending a full month in Amsterdam.”

—Mirko Cro Cop in an interview with translated by Fighters Only talking about his new training camp

After suffering another heartbreaking loss in the UFC last September, Mirko Cro Cop fired his entire training camp and hired a new one led by Muay Thai trainer Ivan Hyppolite to help him prepare for his upcoming fight against Ben Rothwell at UFC 110. At this point, I don’t think anyone is getting their hopes up that a different camp is the magic solution to Cro Cop’s problems in the cage, but he seems convinced that getting rid of all the yes-men who didn’t push him was exactly what he needed. I still think the majority of Mirko’s problems reside in his head, but hopefully this will give him the confidence he needs to start pulling the trigger again.

Image via Sherdog